Paying attention

originally published 2/20/2011

I’ve been spending time rereading old STUDIO POTTER magazines

From Joe Spano, Studio Potter Vol. 13 # 2

“I live with many of [Joan’s] pots.  Some of them I handle every day.  They illuminate my life in daily ways, quiet and unremarked pleasures.  Others stop me in my tracks.  They are the master’s slap, the laugh of god.  They tell me that it’s wise to pay attention.  I value both, as both have gifts to give if I’m in the receiving vein.”

And then:

“I came to love the handmade pot because I saw in it what I now see in every pot that’s made with love:  the obvious, it has been handled.  Physical decisions have been made over every inch of its surface.  Countless split-second calculations, corrections, compromises, challenges, surrenders, and triumphs have led to the existence of this piece of earth in this exact form.  So when I hold it, it interests me.  It has something to say to me.  Not intending to teach, it cannot help but do so.”

Handmade pots do tell me that it’s wise to pay attention- to the pot in my hand, the coffee in the cup, the prism rainbows on my kitchen wall, the day quietly beginning.

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